When the Murdocch mafiosi needed someone to moralise about the left, there at the front of the Times cab rank was alleged senior political correspondent Lucy Fisher, who has duly brought her remaining readers a comment piece titled “Corbynites’ insults will only hurt themselves”. What insults would these be? “Terms of abuse such as ‘gammon’ and ‘centrist dad’ keep the activists energised but will drive away swathes of voters”.
Wall Of Gammon - in the studio ...
From this, we can tell that someone in the Baby Shard bunker is rather sensitive to being called a Gammon. And yes, it could be one of scores of unappealing hacks and pundits. So what is Ms Fisher’s schtick? “Gammon was last seen on dining tables in the 1970s, often crowned with a slice of withered pineapple. Now it’s back on the menu as the insult of choice among the Corbynite left - and it provides a key insight into the psychology of the Labour leader’s outriders”. How wrong can she be?
... and on the streets
The use of the term Gammon, or the more inclusive Wall Of Gammon (tm), has nothing to do with Jeremy Corbyn, the wider Labour Party, the left, or indeed any shade of political opinion. It’s about those who bluster and protest pointlessly.
Still, off she went to promote her claims. “Gammons, centrist dads, melts & slugs: the nomenclature of nastiness on the left is growing. The culture of scorn may galvanise activists in the short-term, but will alienate voters at the ballot box”. “Melt” and “Slug” have nothing to do with the left either. Try again. “To those saying "both sides hurl insults" - I don't disagree! The thing about Left-wing name-calling, however, is it's often high-profile figures engaging in it”. So it’s about the right-wing press trying to shut down opposition.
Which is why the chorus of derision has been long and loud today, typified by the reaction of Michael Hoefsmit: “So if gammon is racist, what is snowflake?” (see also Trot, Traitor, Enemies of the People, Remoaner, Saboteur, Virtue Signalling, etc) Ash Sarkar of Novara Media mused “Middle aged white men, who think political correctness has gone too far cos you can’t call it a Paki Shop anymore, complaining to The Times that they’re being marginalised by racism through being called gammon”. It’s that ridiculous.
Aysun Makendzhieva had another angle on the Gammon debate. “Times columnists who defend gammon have to be called pineapples: they’re on the side of gammon” (Ho ho ho) while the rep from JOE mused “Conflating gammon with blue-collar voters is about as classist as you'd expect from The Times”. Ms Fisher never eats at her local Spoons.
Radicals regretted (sort of) the declining standards of today’s allegedly quality journalism. “Though never friendly in a political sense, there was actually a time when papers such as the Times and the Telegraph *did* some journalism. Now their Chief Political Correspondents write about whether ‘gammon’ and ‘centrist dad’ is an unacceptable slur. What melts” (Ho ho ho). And Mic Wright had some culinary advice for the Times pundit.
“One last thing about that Times opinion piece on ‘gammon’. It didn’t disappear from menus in the 1970s. Wander out of London and it’s still a pub staple. Also, I cooked some a few weeks back. Delicious”. But calling someone a Gammon is about their demeanour.
Lucy Fisher tried to send the left on a guilt trip and shut down debate. All she achieved was to show how out of touch she is. Gun, foot, point, BANG. No change there, then.